For business owners on the go, monitoring and managing Yelp reviews just got easier. The popular review site just released a new mobile app called “Yelp for Business Owners” that will make it easy to read and respond to customer reviews without powering up a PC.
With the new app, business owners can sign up to receive real-time push notifications of reviews and messages on Yelp, respond publicly or privately to those messages and reviews, and even view their Yelp business page activity on their mobile devices, including number of views and customer leads generated over the last 30 days.
Message the Business Takes Off
Yelp previously released a new business tool called Message the Business. Message the Business allows customers to contact the page owner directly, and according to Yelp, users are now using the tool to send an average of 55,000 messages to business page owners each month. While helpful to foster communication, unfortunately Yelp does not provide any contact information about the customers messaging so that it’s not possible to connect the information with the other data about this customer and build lasting relationships beyond Yelp.
As far as the mobile app, the real-time push notifications feature is probably the most useful, allowing business owners to read and respond to messages and reviews as soon as they come in while you are fresh in the minds of the inquirer or reviewer. And now, citing an increasing reliance on mobile devices, Yelp’s new mobile app is designed to help business owners manage their pages more effectively, from anywhere at any time.
Yelp Increasingly Goes Mobile
Since more than 64 percent of Yelp queries and 45 percent of Yelp reviews come through mobile devices, and with 73 million unique monthly visitors to Yelp via mobile, there’s a clear need to connect business owners and customers through smart phones and tablets. Available on Android and iOS, the new business app is just the first step in improving mobile access. In the future Yelp plans to upgrade the app to allow business owners to update and change profile information, post photos and create offers and promotions on the fly.
After all, most small business owners don’t spend their day sitting in front of a desktop PC. They’re busy running their business, managing inventory, supervising personnel and doing all the things that business owners do. They need to be able to manage reviews and customer relations during lulls in their day — on an elevator, in a waiting room, at an airport or wherever.
Following the Google My Business Model
Yelp’s new release comes on the heels of Google’s release of the Google My Business mobile app, which allows business owners to receive push notifications, read and respond to Google+ reviews in real time. Additionally, Yelp advertisers will also be able to view reports on ad clicks from Yelp users on their mobile devices.
If Yelp and Google+ are any indication, we live in an increasingly mobile world. More and more business is being conducted on smart phones and tablets, and still other forms of mobile devices are on the rise. Whether you consider this a benefit or a detriment, it’s happening, and it’s an important tool for staying in touch with your customers.